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The stiffness of the single myosin motor (epsilon) is determined in skinned fibers from rabbit psoas muscle by both mechanical and thermodynamic approaches. Changes in the elastic strain of the half-sarcomere (hs) are measured by fast mechanics both in rigor, when all myosin heads are attached, and during active contraction, with the isometric force (T0)(More)
Skeletal muscle can bear a high load at constant length, or shorten rapidly when the load is low. This force-velocity relationship is the primary determinant of muscle performance in vivo. Here we exploited the quasi-crystalline order of myosin II motors in muscle filaments to determine the molecular basis of this relationship by X-ray interference and(More)
Step changes in length (between -3 and +5 nm per half-sarcomere) were imposed on isolated muscle fibers at the plateau of an isometric tetanus (tension T0) and on the same fibers in rigor after permeabilization of the sarcolemma, to determine stiffness of the half-sarcomere in the two conditions. To identify the contribution of actin filaments to the total(More)
Muscle contraction is driven by the motor protein myosin II, which binds transiently to an actin filament, generates a unitary filament displacement or 'working stroke', then detaches and repeats the cycle. The stroke size has been measured previously using isolated myosin II molecules at low load, with rather variable results, but not at the higher loads(More)
At the molecular level, muscle contraction is the result of cyclic interaction between myosin crossbridges, which extend from the thick filament, and the thin filament, which consists mainly of actin. The energy for work done by a single crossbridge during a cycle of attachment, generation of force, shortening and detachment is believed to be coupled to the(More)
Force enhancement during lengthening of an active muscle, a condition that normally occurs during locomotion in vivo, is attributed to recruitment of myosin heads that exhibit fast attachment to and detachment from actin in a cycle that does not imply ATP splitting. We investigated the kinetic and mechanical features of this cycle in Ca(2+) activated single(More)
The relation between the chemical and mechanical steps of the myosin-actin ATPase reaction that leads to generation of isometric force in fast skeletal muscle was investigated in demembranated fibers of rabbit psoas muscle by determining the effect of the concentration of inorganic phosphate (Pi) on the stiffness of the half-sarcomere (hs) during transient(More)
1. Steady lengthenings at different velocities (0.02-1.6 microns/s per half-sarcomere, temperature 2.5-5.5 degrees C) were imposed on isolated frog muscle fibres at the plateau of the isometric tetanus (tension T0). When tension during lengthening had attained a steady value (Ti), which varied from about 1.5 to about 2 times T0 depending on lengthening(More)
Rapid attachment to actin of the detached motor domain of myosin dimers with one motor domain already attached has been hypothesized to explain the stretch-induced changes in X-ray interference and stiffness of active muscle. Here, using half-sarcomere mechanics in single frog muscle fibres (2.15 microm sarcomere length and 4 degrees C), we show that: (1)(More)
A shortening muscle is a machine that converts metabolic energy into mechanical work, but, when a muscle is stretched, it acts as a brake, generating a high resistive force at low metabolic cost. The braking action of muscle can be activated with remarkable speed, as when the leg extensor muscles rapidly decelerate the body at the end of a jump. Here we(More)